Sunday, June 13, 2010

Hoarding a danger to people, animals

By Chloe White Kennedy

"...East Tennessee has recorded several animal hoarding cases in recent months. Some cats and dogs were saved; dozens more were in such bad shape they had to be euthanized. One home has been condemned, another completely demolished. Two Knoxvillians are awaiting prosecution for cruelty to animals.

Experts consider animal hoarding to be a mental health problem, but its effects can reach far beyond the individual. Hoarding subjects innocent animals to disease and cannibalism, can cost thousands of dollars when a community is forced to intervene, and poses a health threat to the population at large.

And often the animal hoarders have no idea of the harm they're causing. They may start by keeping a few animals that rapidly multiply.

"It's such a paradox, because you have people who love animals … but they can't provide for their basic needs," said Knox County Assistant District Attorney General Joanie Stewart...." More

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